The Importance of Private Foundations in the Fight Against Ebola

During this unprecedented Ebola epidemic in West Africa, speed and flexibility are key components of an effective response strategy. Funding from private philanthropies has become critically important to public health responders on the front lines of the Ebola battle in West Africa.

An article in today’s Washington Post emphasizes the importance of private foundations in this fight against Ebola, and outlines many of the CDC Foundation’s efforts in West Africa.

Reporter Ariana Eunjung Cha writes, “The unpredictable nature of the Ebola virus has made the government’s partnerships with private donors critically important in the crisis response.”

Dr. Joseph Bresee, an epidemiologist with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, just returned from Sierra Leone. Cha quotes Dr. Bresee in the article saying that unexpected needs, big and small, came up nearly every day: motorcycles to deliver supplies through narrow roads; baby formula for a child whose parents had just died; data-entry staffers to help log the growing number of cases. “There would not have been an obvious second way to do what we did without foundation funds,” he said.

For more information about the CDC Foundation’s efforts in West Africa, check out this page.


Claire Stinson is a senior communications officer for the CDC Foundation.